Concept: Yuma County, Arizona
With thousands of pesticides registered by the United States Environmental Protection Agency, it not feasible to sample for all pesticides applied in agricultural communities. Hazard-ranking pesticides based on use, toxicity, and exposure potential can help prioritize community-specific pesticide hazards. This study applied hazard-ranking schemes for cancer, endocrine disruption, and reproductive/developmental toxicity in Yuma County, Arizona. An existing cancer hazard-ranking scheme was modified, and novel schemes for endocrine disruption and reproductive/developmental toxicity were developed to rank pesticide hazards. The hazard-ranking schemes accounted for pesticide use, toxicity, and exposure potential based on chemical properties of each pesticide. Pesticides were ranked as hazards with respect to each health effect, as well as overall chronic health effects. The highest hazard-ranked pesticides for overall chronic health effects were maneb, metam-sodium, trifluralin, pronamide, and bifenthrin. The relative pesticide rankings were unique for each health effect. The highest hazard-ranked pesticides differed from those most heavily applied, as well as from those previously detected in Yuma homes over a decade ago. The most hazardous pesticides for cancer in Yuma County, Arizona were also different from a previous hazard-ranking applied in California. Hazard-ranking schemes that take into account pesticide use, toxicity, and exposure potential can help prioritize pesticides of greatest health risk in agricultural communities. This study is the first to provide pesticide hazard-rankings for endocrine disruption and reproductive/developmental toxicity based on use, toxicity, and exposure potential. These hazard-ranking schemes can be applied to other agricultural communities for prioritizing community-specific pesticide hazards to target decreasing health risk.
Undocumented Border Crosser (UBC) deaths in Arizona are a major issue faced by medicolegal authorities. Currently, the Maricopa County Office of the Medical Examiner (MCOME) is in possession of over two hundred unidentified individuals, more than half of whom are presumed to be UBCs. The primary goal of this study was to address the growing number of UBC deaths in Maricopa County in order to provide a more comprehensive picture of this important anthropological issue within the state of Arizona. Of the 107 total UBC cases evaluated for the study, the majority were male and age estimates for all individuals were between 15 to 60 years old. Modeled after the recording system established by the Pima County Office of the Medical Examiner, the biographic and geographic data for these cases were entered into a new UBC database at MCOME and later added to the online Map of Migrant Mortality.
The aim of this study was to describe the disparities in healthcare utilization and costs between Hispanic and non-Hispanic patients with seizures or epilepsy. We reviewed the insurance status and healthcare resource utilization data from 2005 to 2008 for all patients with seizures and epilepsy seen at the Yuma Regional Medical Center (YRMC). Charges for medical services provided to Hispanic patients with epilepsy between the ages of 18 and 49 were significantly less than those for non-Hispanic patients with epilepsy (Hispanic: $3167.63 versus non-Hispanic: $5154.36, P<0.001). Taking into account the differences in insurance status, setting of care, and total number of procedures, we still saw a significant difference in charges between the two groups at the outpatient settings. These data differ from currently available data on national and Eastern US Hispanic patients with epilepsy, suggesting that patients in this border community are somehow different from Hispanics elsewhere in the US.
SUMMARY In June 2011, a cluster of suspected cases of Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS), which can follow Campylobacter jejuni infection, was identified in San Luis Río Colorado (SLRC), Sonora, Mexico and Yuma County, Arizona, USA. An outbreak investigation identified 26 patients (18 from Sonora, eight from Arizona) with onset of GBS 4 May-21 July 2011, exceeding the expected number of cases (n = 1-2). Twenty-one (81%) patients reported antecedent diarrhoea, and 61% of 18 patients tested were seropositive for C. jejuni IgM antibodies. In a case-control study matched on age group, sex, ethnicity, and neighbourhood of residence, all Arizona GBS patients travelled to SLRC during the exposure period vs. 45% of matched controls (matched odds ratio 8·1, 95% confidence interval 1·5-∞). Exposure information and an environmental assessment suggested that GBS cases resulted from a large outbreak of C. jejuni infection from inadequately disinfected tap water in SLRC. Binational collaboration was essential in investigating this cross-border GBS outbreak, the first in mainland North America since 1976.
Prior research shows that work in agriculture and construction/extraction occupations increases the risk of environmental heat-associated death.